How to Save Money When You Have Children

There are so many lifestyle blogs out there that give you suggestions on how to save money, that are completely not applicable to families with children. These ideas from a reader are specifically geared towards you, moms and dads, ways that you can save money, taking into account your family needs.

It’s no secret that no matter how much you love them, kids are expensive. Even without children, day to day living can prove to be hugely expensive, but when you have a little one to think about too this can become especially stressful. Of course, you don’t want your child to suffer because you’re trying to save money, and you’ll want them to have everything they need and more. The question is how can you actually save money effectively when you have little ones to take care of? With these top tips, you’ll realise it’s not so difficult, and no one has to miss out because of it.

Check What You’re Entitled to

Before cutting back on anything in particular, double check what you’re actually entitled to when you have children in the house. One of the biggest costs that full-time working parents find themselves forking out for is childcare, because it’s completely unavoidable in a lot of cases. If you are a working parent, check if you’re entitled to childcare vouchers. If you do your research and find that you are entitled to some sort of help here, you could be saving yourself thousands of pounds every year. Many employers don’t advertise, but do offer this, so it’s worth checking with your boss if you’re entitled to these.

Meal Planning

A lot of our wasted money comes from throwing away uneaten food or picking up food when you’re out and about rather than cooking. Your kids will undoubtedly beg you for a McDonalds when you’re out doing the shopping, and it’s very easy to say yes when you’re knackered from dragging them around all day and can’t even think of what to make for dinner. Well, if you plan your meals well in advance, this will no longer be an issue. Before doing the shop, sit down with your kids and make a weekly or fortnightly dinner time menu, then buy only the necessary ingredients to make what is on the said menu. By getting your kids involved and planning ahead you’ll not only save money on your shopping and extras, but you’ll be making food that your kids will actually enjoy eating because they’ve chosen it themselves. It’s also a great way to get the whole family eating healthily, so everybody wins!

Think Thriftily

Kids grow so quickly and therefore need new clothes and shoes all of the time, which is of course another cost to add to the list. Before going out and buying everything brand new, consider going second hand. Second-hand clothing no longer holds the connotations of being the poor and unhygienic choice, and it absolutely doesn’t have to be bad quality stuff. Nowadays, with websites such as eBay and the rising popularity of buying designer clothing in thrift stores, you can’t really go wrong with going second-hand if you do it right. A lot of the stuff is actually fairly brand new if you shop carefully, and your kids won’t even know the difference.

Look at the Bigger Picture

Don’t only look at the smaller corners you can cut when you’re trying to save cash and remember to look at the bigger ways you can save too. Looking at things such as utility bills and car insurance and comparing them effectively with other suppliers and providers is a good way of making sure that you’re paying the lowest rate possible for your bills.

Likewise, remember to research everything you do thoroughly. For example, if you’re looking to sell a family home quickly but need to save money in the process look into alternative selling companies such as By doing this you’ll not only get yourself a free home valuation, but you’ll save money on expenses such as estate agents fees, and the long-term process of waiting around for a buyer. Of course, that’s just an example, but it goes to show that by doing your research you can save yourself a lot of time and money – and it’s not as if time and money comes in an abundance when you have kids!

Bring the Entertainment Home

Last but not least, don’t forget about the things that you and your kids enjoy doing. Instead of going on family days out that cost a lot of money, try and bring the same entertainment home for much cheaper. For example, if you all love going to the cinema, why not buy or download the latest movies, make some pizzas and popcorn, build a cosy pillow fort and voila, you have a cosy family night in, at the movies. You don’t have to miss out on doing the things that you love doing as a family.

See my disclaimer.

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal

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